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Debates over municipalities’ shared boundaries can turn into headaches or sometimes even get heated, but Nibley and Hyrum are trying to head some of those woes off at the pass.

The Nibley City Council passed a first reading annexation agreement on Oct. 28 with Hyrum, promising they would not annex any land past 4400 South. An amendment was also passed stating that residential uses would not be located within 660 feet of that road, striking the words “industrial” and “manufacturing uses” from the proposed agreement.

The agreement will also need to be viewed, discussed and approved by Hyrum. It then will return to Nibley for a second reading.

Nibley City Manager Justin Maughan said the biggest reason why this agreement was being made was to plan for the future of utilities.

“It’s something that we would like to have — just a good plan in place so that we’re not duplicating utilities and having people kind of pitting cities against each other,” he said. “We’re kind of hoping we can have a good conversation, get something that makes sense and get an agreement there.”

Rocky Mountain Power provided utilities to the north side of 4400 South while Hyrum serviced the south. Hyrum originally wanted the boundary to rest at 4000 South but were comfortable adjusting it to 4400.

Council Member Kathryn Beus asked how binding the agreement would be. Mayor Shaun Dustin explained it could be made binding by those two utility companies being on the north and south sides.

The council also chose to amend section 4.b, removing the term “agricultural” from the following sentence:

“The Parties agree that properties within 660 feet of 4400 South should be zoned for residential, or mixed agricultural/residential/commercial uses and have a maximum density of eight equivalent residential units (ERU) per acre, unless a higher density is authorized by the other Party in writing.”

One of Beus’s worries was the utility companies bartering and pitting the cities against each other. Council Member Nathan Laursen suggested “asking for requirements of notification in zoning before uses happen,” according to recorded minutes of the meeting.

Dustin and the council plan to gather a list of suggestions to pass along to Hyrum as a part of their first reading. The first vote was unanimous and the second reading is tentative.

“It’s just a good line for planning purposes,” Maughan said. “We’ll do some coordinating in committees and then take it back to the respective councils after that.”

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